Most people take one or more prescription medications on a daily basis. You may be surprised to know that it is possible to be charged with driving under the influence (DUI) for driving after taking medication – even if the medication was prescribed by a physician and taken legally.
DUI convictions can result in revocation of the offender’s driver’s license, steep fees, and depending on the circumstances, jail time. If you or a loved one were charged with drunk driving because of prescription medication, contact a DUI defense lawyer for help.
DUI for Doctor-Prescribed Medicine
It is hard to believe that something rightfully prescribed by a doctor can lead to DUI charges. However, Illinois law states that a driver may be charged with DUI for:
Having a blood alcohol content of greater than 0.08 percent
Having a THC concentration of 5 nanograms or more per milliliter of blood
Being impaired by any other intoxicating substance or drug that makes the driver unable to drive safely
If a medication has side effects that impair a driver’s reaction time, attention, or cognition, he or she may be arrested and charged for intoxicated driving.
Penalties for DUI in Illinois
The penalties associated with DUI vary based on the circumstances of the alleged offense. A first-time DUI conviction is punishable by driver’s license suspension, fines up to $2,500, and up to a year in jail. However, most first-time DUI offenders do not receive significant jail time unless there are aggravating factors. DUI involving injury or death to another person, DUI with a blood alcohol of over 0.16 percent, and DUI with a child passenger are punished more harshly. Second, third, and subsequent DUI offenses are also penalized more harshly than first-time DUIs and may result in felony charges.
Criminal defense lawyers use many different strategies to defend against DUI involving prescription medication. If you were charged with DUI, do not lose hope. You may be able to avoid conviction. Do not answer police questions and contact an attorney for help right away.
Contact a Naperville DUI Defense Lawyer
If you or a loved one were charged with DUI for driving under the influence of prescription medication, contact Aurora criminal defense lawyer Patricia Magaña for help. Ms. Magaña can help you assert your rights and defend yourself against the charges. She may be able to get your charges dismissed or reduced. Call 630-448-2001 for a free, confidential case assessment.